By Muhammed Ali Gurtas
ANKARA (AA) – The Turkish government's budget balance saw a deficit of 20.4 billion Turkish liras ($5.34 billion) in the first quarter of 2018, the Ministry of Finance announced on Monday.
According to an official statement, Turkey's budget revenues amounted to 167.4 billion Turkish liras ($43.8 billion) from January to March, increasing by 15.7 percent compared to the same period of last year.
Over the same period, the budget expenses stood at 187.9 billion Turkish liras ($49.2 billion), marking a 17.7 percent annual rise.
Excluding interest payments, the central government budget balance saw a surplus of nearly $500 million in the first quarter of this year.
The average U.S. dollar/Turkish lira exchange rate in the first quarter was around 3.82, according to Turkey's Central Bank.